Systematic research capacity building program makes a big difference
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Bangladesh Center for Communication Programs (BCCP), Tobacco Control, Bangladesh
Bangladesh Center for Communication Programs (BCCP), Bangladesh
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A652
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Background and challenges to implementation:
Historically, tobacco control has been considered a low-priority issue compared to other health-related programs in Bangladesh. In addition, local research and data around tobacco use, including the contextual factors that influence tobacco use, were inadequate to plan effective tobacco control program.

Intervention or response:
Bangladesh Center for Communication Programs (BCCP) in collaboration with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health has been offering the competitive Tobacco Control Research Grant Program since 2013 to create local data and build the research capacity of the young researchers of different universities and institutions. The programs organizes research capacity building mentoring workshops covering the whole spectrum of research process with an emphasis on engaging young and experienced researchers to promote peer learning. BCCP research team also nurtures the grantees by providing one-to-one mentorship in every step of research works. Besides, the research grantees are provided mentorship to prepare manuscripts for journal publication immediately after the research grants are over.

Results and lessons learnt:
The program has produced tremendous results to build the research capacity of the young researchers as well as create local data. As of 2016, sixty young researchers from different universities and institutions were awarded with the research grants. The findings of the research studies were disseminated among the relevant stakeholders. The data of the research studies are being utilized to design various anti-tobacco awareness and advocacy programs in the country. A number of research studies have already been published in international journals and presented at international conferences. Bangladesh Tobacco Control Research Network (BTCRN) has been established and made operational to sustain the ongoing tobacco control research activities in Bangladesh.

Conclusions and key recommendations:
The Government of Bangladesh and different universities have expressed interest to collaborate with BTCRN to carry forward its mandate. A systematically developed program can make a big difference for tobacco control.